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NEWS
June 15, 2016 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Staff Writer
Pennsylvania's Supreme Court has refused to block a judge's order requiring the Philadelphia District Attorney's Office to surrender three cellphones for examination by lawyers in litigation from the deadly 2013 Salvation Army collapse. In a one-sentence ruling Friday, the high court unanimously rejected the district attorney's request to stay a May 23 order by Common Pleas Court Judge Mark I. Bernstein punishing prosecutors for not turning over the cellphones. The ruling is final, and the District Attorney's Office on Monday released a statement saying it would comply with Bernstein's order.
NEWS
June 15, 2016 | By Angela Couloumbis, HARRISBURG BUREAU
HARRISBURG - Gov. Wolf has nominated Superior Court Judge Sallie Updyke Mundy to fill a vacancy on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court left when Justice J. Michael Eakin resigned this year because of his involvement in a pornographic email scandal. In nominating Mundy, 53, a Republican from Tioga County, Wolf said he would depart from the long-established tradition in Pennsylvania politics of requiring his nominee to promise not to run for the judicial seat in the next election. Instead, the Democratic governor said Monday that his nominee could seek a 10-year term on the state's highest court.
NEWS
June 11, 2016 | By Jeremy Roebuck, Staff Writer
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Thursday that former Pennsylvania Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille was wrong to participate in an appeal from a death-row inmate whose prosecution he oversaw nearly three decades before. In a 5-3 split, the justices ordered a new hearing for Terrance Williams, finding that Castille's involvement in hearing the case when it came before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court in 2014 violated Williams' constitutional rights. The decision served as a sharp rebuke to Castille, one of the Pennsylvania legal system's most towering figures in recent years.
NEWS
June 2, 2016 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Staff Writer
The Philadelphia District Attorney's Office has asked the state Supreme Court to stay a judge's order punishing prosecutors for not surrendering three cellphones for examination by lawyers in the civil case filed in connection with the Center City building collapse. The motion filed Friday contends that Common Pleas Court Judge Mark I. Bernstein had no authority to grant sanctions requested by lawyers for the Salvation Army, whose thrift store at 22nd and Market Streets was crushed when an unsupported three- to four-story brick wall toppled from an adjacent property.
NEWS
June 2, 2016
More than two million Pennsylvania voters responded to a clear question put to them on April 26 - whether the state's mandatory retirement age for judges should be raised from 70 to 75 - with a clear answer: No. Rather than accept this result, those rooting for the opposite outcome have decided the question was a little too clear. With the tenure of the state Supreme Court's chief justice and lone Republican, 69-year-old Thomas Saylor, at stake, the legislature's ruling Republicans passed a resolution and won a court ruling rendering the election results moot less than a week beforehand.
NEWS
May 30, 2016
Jeffrey Rosen is president and CEO of the National Constitution Center A hundred years ago, on June 1, 1916, Louis Brandeis was confirmed as an associate justice of the Supreme Court. One hundred and twenty-five days elapsed between his nomination and confirmation - the longest period any nominee has waited in American history. (Merrick Garland will surpass this record in July.) The long delay in Brandeis' confirmation reflected the controversy he had inspired as the crusading "People's Attorney," who made his name by attacking financiers such as J.P. Morgan, who took reckless risks with what Brandeis called "other people's money.
NEWS
May 25, 2016 | By Bob Ford, Inquirer Columnist
The National Football League Players Association has added Theodore B. Olson to its legal team in the important fight to prevent quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo from starting four games for the New England Patriots in the coming season. A lot must be riding on the outcome, because Olson, a former Solicitor General of the United States who has argued 62 cases before the Supreme Court, doesn't come cheap. He's pretty good, though, having won three-quarters of those cases, and he covered the spread in a bunch of the others.
NEWS
May 25, 2016 | By Laura McCrystal and Jeremy Roebuck, STAFF WRITERS
Bill Cosby's sexual-assault case will proceed on a path toward trial as scheduled, after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Monday rejected his latest attempt to delay it. In a one-line order, the court denied Cosby's request for a stay while it reviewed the charges against him. The ruling removes the last potential roadblock to Tuesday morning's preliminary hearing in Montgomery County Court in Norristown. Cosby's lawyers had asked the Supreme Court to put that proceeding on hold as he sought a rare pretrial appeal.
NEWS
May 13, 2016 | By Martha Woodall, Staff Writer
HARRISBURG - Did the Philadelphia School Reform Commission have the power to cancel its teachers' contract and impose changes to their health-care plan during a financial crisis in 2014? SRC attorney David H. Pittinsky told the state Supreme Court on Wednesday that the commission has at its disposal "an arsenal of rights that were given by the General Assembly" to reduce expenses, to ensure that students in the city's public schools have the resources for an "adequate" education.
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